"So just as the United States made foundational contributions in the past, today I am announcing $113 million in new usa initiatives to support foundational areas of the future: digital economy, energy, and infrastructure".
Secretary of State Michael Pompeo took not-so-subtle digs at China in pitching U.S. commitment to a "free and open" Indo-Pacific region despite President Donald Trump's decision past year to pull out of the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade agreement.
The move comes nine months after the Trump administration openly spoke against the "predatory economic policies of an Asian giant" that threatens to eat into sovereignty of countries in Indo-Pacific, which has now emerged as a critical engine for growth. "A free and open Indo-Pacific is America's chosen course, and we hope that it will be yours too".
The new USA initiatives and funding would be focused on digital economy, energy and infrastructure, Hook said, without giving any figures on investment amounts.
Addressing an audience of business leaders, diplomats and senior administration officials, Mr. Pompeo said that the U.S. The statement includes a commitment to partner on economic development in the Indo-Pacific, and goes more specific with a plan on infectious disease reduction and global health security across the Indo-Pacific.
Trade Minister Steve Ciobo denied the three-way initiative was a challenge to China.
The agreement was expected to be signed at the 18-nation Pacific Islands Forum in September, New Zealand's Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade said, describing the Pacific as an "increasingly contested strategic environment".
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Speaking at the same event, US Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross said the United States has eased export controls for high-technology product sales to India.
Foreign minister Julie Bishop said the trilateral partnership would "mobilise investment in projects that drive economic growth, create opportunities, and foster a free, open, inclusive and prosperous Indo-Pacific". We want the peaceful resolution of territorial and maritime disputes.
That money will help countries in the region grow their economies in the digital and energy sectors. That is why the Indo-Pacific must be free and open.
In the 1960s, the United States grew partnerships to address basic developmental needs.
India is a key partner to ensure that the entire region has peace, stability and growing prosperity, he said. "Integrity in businesses' practices is an essential pillar of our Indo-Pacific economic vision".
Under this the USA will support communications infrastructure development through technical assistance and public-private partnerships; promote market-driven digital regulatory policies; and build partners' cybersecurity capacity to address common threats, he said.
Pompeo also announced strengthened support for regional institutions in the Indo-Pacific, including the ASEAN and US-ASEAN Connect, APEC, and the Lower Mekong Initiative, along with a first-ever contribution to the Indian Ocean Rim Association.